Jade Jones on Sleep and Kicking Back

4 min read

Last Modified 28 May 2021 First Added 8 April 2021

What’s your sleep regime when training or competing?

I always try to get at least 8 hours of sleep and any more is a bonus. As I get closer to a competition I do try and bank a few more hours sleep because I know before my weigh-in day, I don’t sleep much because I’m starving [from dieting to make a fighting weight], so I try to bank lots more sleep so it doesn’t matter if I miss some.

How do you find sleep (or lack of) affects performance?

Once, I had terrible sleep for a few days before a competition. I got to competition day and all I wanted to do was go to sleep. I remember thinking ‘I’m supposed to be in the zone and fighting,’ but I just wanted to go to sleep. Ever since that day I make sure I get more sleep before a competition because it definitely does affect your performance.

How does travel impact on your sleep routine?

It is a lot harder when you travel away, like coping with different beds. Sometimes you end up with a rock-hard bed or a tiny bed. Things like that make it hard – the different kinds of beds and the jetlag and things that just come with travelling.

Lack of sleep definitely affects performance.

Any tips for sleeping when travelling?

I take my own pillow with me, because sometimes when you’re staying in foreign hotels it can be a bit harder to get to sleep. If you’ve got a pillow you’re used to, it makes things easier, you don’t get a bad neck and that helps to stop you getting a bad night’s sleep.

Do you have set patterns before going to bed?

I normally take cherry active juice because that helps me go to sleep. I like to have a protein shake too – the protein breaks down through the hours you’re sleeping. And lately I’ve started to read a book for about twenty minutes before I go to sleep.

Your Number 1 sleep tip?

Definitely making the room as dark as possible. If it’s super dark I just sleep so much easier.

How does sleep help with injury recovery?

It’s super important because you actually recover and heal when you’re sleeping. If you’re not getting any sleep in, then there’s no time for your injuries to recover. I’ve been getting lots of sleep and my [current] injury has already recovered in 2 weeks, so it must work!

If I’ve had a bad night’s sleep I can’t switch on.

Do you nap?

Yes, especially when I’ve got a hard day. When I’ve got two or three training sessions in the day I usually nap after the first one. To be fair, I actually prefer naps to normal sleep. Usually I nap for 40 minutes to an hour. If I’m lucky, I can get an hour and a half in.

What keeps you awake at night?

The night before a fight I’ll sometimes just be lying there going through tactics and thinking about my opponent, hoping it’ll all go right. It’s like over-thinking things. Also, when I’m dieting [to make a fighting weight] the lack of food makes it harder to get to sleep.

Do you prefer a soft or hard mattress?

Somewhere in the middle – I like it with a bit of firmness to it but also some softness so you can melt into it.

When the alarm goes, do you leap out of bed or sneak in a snooze?

Leap out of bed. I set the alarm for as late as I possibly can and then leap out of bed.

When do you get to lie-in?

I do get a chance to lie-in at the weekend sometimes because we don’t always have training but for some reason my body clock won’t go off so I always end up getting up.


Get to know Jade further in this quick-fire interview post.